Antoine LeCoultre founded LeCoultre in 1833 in the small village of Le Sentier, Switzerland. By 1866, LeCoultre’s workshop had grown from home-run manufacturers spread across Switzerland to installing modern steam-driven machines to power the tools of all of the watchmakers moving them from their homes and bringing them together, in one central unit. Now named LeCoultre & Cie, the company became the very first manufacturer in the Vallée de Joux Switzerland. Antoine and his son Elie LeCoultre employed more than 500 watchmakers in-house. In 1903 Edmond Jaeger, a watchmaker in Paris making watches for the French Navy, challenged the Swiss manufacturers to produce an ultrathin movement. Jacques-David LeCoultre, Elie’s son, rose to the challenge and created the world’s thinnest pocket watch, equipped with the LeCoultre 146 caliber, measuring just 1.38 mm thick.
Over the following years, Jaeger and LeCoultre kept in touch, building a strong friendship, and in 1937 Jaeger-LeCoultre was founded. In 2013 they celebrated their 180th Anniversary. Creating iconic timepieces like the Reverso wristwatch to the brilliantly engineered Atmos clock. During the war years, the Mark VII pilot watches of the 1940s were so accurate the Royal Air Force used them as aerial navigation instruments; later they created the first automatic watch to house a power-reserve indicator in 1948 that was used by the US Army Air Corps. Jaeger-LeCoultre has developed and revolutionized the watch industry like no other manufacturer. Since 2000 they have been a fully owned subsidiary of the Swiss luxury group Richemont. This group includes Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels, IWC Schaffhausen, Panerai, Piaget, Vacheron Constantin, Montblanc, Dunhill, and Chloé.
This stunning 2014 Jaeger-LeCoultre Grande Reverso 986 DuoDate is clearly inspired by the geometric forms of the 1930s Art deco. The Reverso was first introduced in 1930 it was made for polo players that wanted to protect their watch dials when playing. A stainless steel rectangular case. Its elegant case is polished with deep horizontal lines, creating a classic look. The case gently slopes towards the lugs. Its lug to lug length of 49mm ensures a comfortable fit on the wrist. The flat rectangular sapphire crystal protects a silver dial with Clous de Paris guilloche finishing. Black Arabic numeral indexes mark the hours. Cut into the dial an inner minute track, at 12 o’clock a date crescent, and finally at 6 o’clock a rectangle sub-seconds register. Fine blued sword hands. Applied Jaeger-LeCoultre sits under the date crescent. When you flip the watch a flat sapphire crystal protects a black dial with Clous de Paris guilloche finishing. Recessed Arabic 12, 3, and 9 numerals with slim baton indexes marking the hours. At 6 o'clock a day-night register with 24-hour Arabic numeral indexes. Perfect for setting when you are traveling. Lume filled sword hands. The case back is perfectly fitted with Reverso engraved into it. Inside Manually Wound JLC Cal. 986, 19 Jewels 28,800, beats per hour. Fitted with a Tourbillon Escapement to help increase accuracy. Fitted on a 22mm black leather strap that tapers to 20mm. A signed double folded deployment clasp.
Points of Mention
This watch is sold with an original JLC box & JLC paperwork, as photographed. The watch comes paired with an aftermarket WatchGecko leather strap that is the exact same size as the original to fit the original JLC buckle. The watch is from March 2014 and is in worn condition, however, we can arrange to have it refinished to look as close to new again at an additional cost if requested. The watch comes with our 12-Months NON-Waterproof Warranty.
The Reverso is an all-time classic watch, the design that I feel almost everyone knows JLC for, rightfully so! The Grande size brought the Reverso into the 21st century for those who found the original sizes far too small, personally, I adore the original size but admit it may be a tad small for most. This Grande offers all the charm and heritage of the Reverso but the person who appreciates a larger watch.